Some students at Prince George's school are being tested for coronavirus

Pupils at the London private school attended by Prince George and Princess Charlotte are staying home following trips to areas affected by the coronavirus.
/ Source: TODAY
By Scott Stump

Some students at the London private school attended by Prince George and Princess Charlotte are staying home as they await test results for the coronavirus.

The exact number of students currently staying home from Thomas's Battersea school after being tested for the COVID-19 virus has not been confirmed by NBC News.

The private school attended by Prince George and Princess Charlotte, Thomas's Battersea in London, has several students staying home as they await results of tests for the coronavirus. Aaron Chown/Getty Images

Many schools in the United Kingdom are asking students who visited northern Italy, China or other areas impacted by the virus to stay home if they exhibit flu-like symptoms.

The school attended by George, 6, and Charlotte, 4, remains open, while several others across Britain have closed due to the threat of the coronavirus. Public Health England said it is not advising school closures at this time. Buckingham Palace declined to comment and the school has not responded to a request for comment by NBC News.

A majority of the London private schools had last week off, and many families often take the week to go skiing in destinations like the Italian alps. Italy has been the country with the highest number of COVID-19 cases outside of Asia, with about 400 having been reported.

Two new patients tested positive for coronavirus in the U.K. on Thursday, bringing the total number of U.K. cases to 15, according to the England's Department of Health and Social Care. One of the cases originated in Italy, the other in Spain.

British authorities are also urging anyone returning from the affected region in northern Italy or affected areas in Asia after Feb. 19 to self isolate if they experience flu-like symptoms.

The United States currently has 60 confirmed cases and no deaths from the virus. More than 81,000 people have been sickened in more than 35 countries and at least 2,798 have died of the coronavirus since the start of January, according to NBC News reporting, the World Health Organization (WHO) and figures from state government leaders and health officials.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is also confirming that a person in northern California has contracted the virus despite never having traveled outside of the country or having come in contact with another person known to be infected.

President Trump downplayed the threat at a news conference on Wednesday.

"We're very, very ready for this, for anything,'' he said. "Whether it is going to be a breakout of larger proportions, or whether or not, we're at that very low level and we want to keep that it way."

The CDC issued a warning Tuesday that Americans should prepare for possible disruptions like school closings and working from home if the virus starts spreading across the country. Top public health officials also said that an outbreak is all but inevitable, which Trump disputed Wednesday.

"Well, I don't think it's inevitable,'' he said. "It possibly will. It could be at a very small level or it could be at a larger level."

Trump also announced he is tasking Vice President Mike Pence with heading up the government response to the coronavirus.

The first human trial for a coronavirus treatment is underway at the University of Nebraska Medical Center using one of the 14 American passengers from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan who have tested positive for the virus. Eventually, 400 patients will be in the trial worldwide, but any 400 patients will be in the trial worldwide, but any vaccine could be 12 to 18 months away, officials said.